The story behind the holiday.


First-person accounts shed light on one of the most pivotal moments in the history of the Americas.


In some ways, it is a companion story to the Alamo. But on May 5th, 1862, it was the Mexican forces who were besieged, and they engineered a stunning victory rather than a noble defeat. In the process, the history of the New World was reshaped.


Galán Inc. produced this hour long documentary, Cinco de Mayo, for the History Channel. Narrated by Henry Cisneros. Produced and Directed by Hector Galán.


Each May 5th, Cinco de Mayo celebrations are held in cities throughout the United States. Few people, however, know the history and cultural significance of this holiday. Cinco de Mayo is a story that began on a sweltering day in the city of Puebla, Mexico. It was in this city and surrounding forts that an ill-equipped Mexican Army along with Zacapoaxtla Indians and regular citizens beat the invading French Army, the most powerful army in the world at the time, in a bloody battle of the morning of May 5th, Cinco de Mayo, 1862.


The Cinco de Mayo story has never been told on American television. The History Channel brings this riveting story to viewers for the first time. Filmed in Mexico and the U.S., this film captures the events leading to the Cinco de Mayo battle and the stunning aftermath. With thousands of new reinforcements, the French eventually defeated Mexico, forcing President Benito Juarez to flee Mexico City. Napoleon the III’s goal of a French Empire in the America’s became a reality. Maximilian was chosen as the new Emperor and his wife Carlotta as Empress. We look at Maximilian’s doomed three year reign of Mexico and Carlota’s spiral into insanity.


Finally, with guerilla warfare armed by post Civil War United States, Benito Juarez forces the French to withdraw, leading to the capture and execution of Maximilian. Today the memory of the French occupation has faded, except for Cinco de Mayo, the day the Mexicans defeated one of the most powerful armies in the world.

Galán Inc. Television & Film © 2015